Dolce Italia's outlet at Skelton Road aptly named the 'Casa Dolce', is a beautiful bungalow-style house turned into a cosy and warm pizzeria/restaurant. The owners are always present, carefully poring over every dish with their expert touch, and never seem to take a day off.
That being said, while Dolce was the first pizzeria I tried here, it somehow lacks a surprise element that was so prevalent before. That's not to say the food isn't good- it is, but I suppose I've just tried a lot more pizzerias since then.
Either way, let's take a look.
They serve excellent coffee and we've raved about it in all our older reviews, so we skipped on that. This time we tried the Lime Soda (Rs. 400) and the Iced Coffee (Rs. 450). SIKE, ofc we tried another coffee drink.
This drink is usually straightforward, but never boring so there's not much to say. It's a good palate cleanser, that's certain. Dolce offers up their own take on the Iced Coffee, so this one was a nice little turn from the usual Lankan-style Iced coffee. This was served in a rather dignified mug, had an incredibly thick layer of foam on the top and deliciously milky, cold coffee at the bottom.
You can sweeten it to your liking, but try not to mix the whole thing too much lest you waste some of the foam.
Their menu is vast. It took me about 20 minutes just so I could make up my mind on what I wanted. Eventually we settled on the Mediterranean Bruschetta (Rs. 850), the Mushroom & Ricotta Ravioli (Rs. 1,400), a half-and-half pizza with the Toscana and Napoli toppings respectively. The pizza cost Rs. 1,750. Unlike Giovanni's bruschetta which is served on a wood-fired base, or the traditional bruschetta which comes on a white bread baguette, or in most cases sourdough; Dolce's version comes in the form of two toasty slices of Ciabatta bread.
The topping consists of juicy, diced tomatoes topped with some butter and basil. I love my bruschetta with extra olive oil and a dash of balsamic, so it's awesome how they have both of those things ready to despense at the table.
The bruschetta is fresh, filling and surprisingly nice in tandem with the ciabatta bread. Give it a try. Right, now on to the Mushroom + Ricotta Ravioli. I was quite pissed with my lunch partner because he didn't really finish all of it. What a shame.
This is a brilliant dish. I've never come across any other joint that does pasta al dente so well. It had this chewy bite to it that's just a sensory delight- especially when paired with that white sauce and exquisite filling.The filling comes with adequate amounts of tangy ricotta and diced (from what I could taste) abalone, and perhaps even shiitake mushrooms. The sauce makes for a creamy addition, so all you're getting here is a journey of textures, if you're into that sort of thing.
Now, on to the pizza.
I'll start with the Napoli topping first. Do you like anchovies on your pizza? I love it. I asked around at the office and everyone looked at me like I'd committed some sort of egregious blasphemy but what to do. Pizza with anchovies on it almost always looks heinous, and the same can be said of the Napoli half. However, we mustn't let looks deceive, as the pizza itself was absolutely delicious. The anchovies play the starring role with their outstandingly sour, heavily savoury and lightly fishy contribution. The capers provided a lemon-zesty sort of undertone. Definitely get this one if you aren't scared of all that flavour.
Phew okay, onto the Toscana now. This one's a bit special. They've topped it off with generous slices of beef bresaola- which is salted and cured beef (or horse, or venison) that's been left to age for a few months. The flavour was sublime. There wasn't any marinara to distract you from the rich beefy flavour, and the shredded parmiggiano just amplified the overall taste.
Now the crust, isn't very impressive. It's wood-fired of course, but rather flavourless. I might be wrong here, and perhaps the idea is to let all the subtle details of the topping do the talking. But still.
Unfortunately, we have not a single photograph of the desserts we bought. A Custard Cannolo for Rs. 350 and a Tiramisu for Rs. 500 were procured but alas- due to my gluttonous behaviour it all disappeared rather fast.
The Cannolo pastry is flaky and light while the custard filling was thick and rich. So much subtlety and yet packed with flavour at the same time. Plus it's huge...
The Tiramisu was creamy, and rich, We loved it. Although there was a light bit of cardamom that seeped through which threw us off initially- but we couldn't stop eating which is always a good sign.
Service is quite good here. The hostess will be happy to help out with seating, or answer a question or two about the menu.
They've got indoor and outdoor seating. Indoors, it's warm and chirpy with lots of vintage Italian posters (some of them still bearing the stock-photo watermark) on the walls to give the place a bright and lively feel.
The outside area is a great spot for an evening dinner with family, or a romantic setting for some amore and one-on-one chitchat.
We've always liked Dolce, but somehow it's only the nostalgia that stands out above it all. The food, profiteroles and pizza are still wonderful but we'll probably drop in with family or a date- should we ever feel the need to visit.
Or perhaps for a cannolo. Or ten...
Dolce Italia is a good option for a family night-out or a romantic dinner for two.
Our look at Dolce Italia's new premises on Skelton Road.
We love the desserts here. Their pastas aren't half bad either.
Dolce Italia is a lovely little Italian restaurant cum bakery in Bamba. They do Italian favourites that are both authentic and affordable.
Dolce Italia is a new little bakery cum restaurant run by two Italians. They've got some very nice Italian pastries and breads, and the prices aren't too crazy.
සිංහල ඉතාලි කෑම ඉතාලි රසටම කන්න.